Slim and Bob's Excellent Adventure travel blog

Campfire Ring

Campfire Dreaming

The campfire was a big ring of rocks with sand and wood fire maybe 10 foot around. Phillip one of the brothers was kneading a damper when we arrived. It was a large loaf about 10 by 14. A damper is made of flour water and baking soda. and baked in the sand below the fire. I wasn't there when he made the damper but found a recipe online.

First off Phillip told us the rules: The campfire was sacred to them. No trash,cigarette butts, cans or garbage in the fire pit. It was how they cooked and kept warm. The sand below the fire was changed every 2 weeks to keep it clean. He told us about yura wooda aboriginal dreaming. The dreaming stories is is how they passed on information to each other through the years. Phillip talked about the family. ..In their culture the Mothers sisters ( the Aunts) would be the ones who would teach and discipline her daughters and the fathers bothers (the Uncles) are the ones to teach and discipline the boys.

He then told a dreaming story about how white birds got their colors.I will try to tell it ( with Bob and Bobby's help) :

Wadu matiyarri ( A long time ago)

The crow and the magpie were still white and would always go visit their uncle the Eagle in the mountains to learn from him. They would bring food and he would teach them. One day they decided not to go and the uncle flew down to find out why. They told the Uncle ( the Eagle ) that had taught them everything they needed to the Uncle flew back to the mountain. He thought about it for a day and the next day flew back down to the white magfly and the white crow. He asked "why didn't you bring me my food and learn your lessons"? They said they knew all they needed to know. The Magpies and crows bossed the other birds around because they knew everything.

The eagle invited all the birds to a party in a cave. He said to gather up twigs and nuts and seeds, berries and fruit. The crow and the magpie didn't help they just bossed around all the other birds.They then took a nap under the tree.

The eagle told all the birds to put all berries nuts, seeds and fruit in the cave and leave the twigs outside. meanwhile the eagle flew off to get his fire board and drill to start a fire. When he returned he told the birds to go ahead and have their party in the cave. Eagle noticed Magpie and Crow were not there. He told the other birds to whoop it up so Magpie and Crow would wake up from their nap. And they did . As soon as the Magpie and Crow flew in with the others Uncle eagle threw the twigs across the entrance to the cave and started a fire. The king Fisher flew out and got just a little blue from the flame, Pigeon flew out and got a little smoke on her wings so she is gray. Magpie flew out a little faster than the crow and part of him turned black. Crow was last and slower and got really burnt black.

Later another Brother Clary sang songs and played his quitar. There were maybe 20 other there mostly 20 somethings from Australia Sweden and Holland. They were on a camping hiking tour. One of those with them played solo quitar and another woman played the flute.

Happy Trails,

Judy and Bob

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